Myanmar

Map & Basic Information

  • Area

    680,000 square kilometers (about 1.8 times the size of Japan)

  • Population

    51.41 million (as of September 2014, according to the Ministry of Immigration and Population of Myanmar)

  • Capital

    Naypyidaw

  • Ethnicity

    Burmese (about 70%), many other ethnic minorities

  • Language

    Myanmar language

  • Religion

    Buddhism (90%), Christianity, Islam, etc.

myanmar

Source:Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan

Issues to be addressed

While the development of social infrastructure is lagging in Myanmar as a whole, people with disabilities, in particular, have limited access to medical care, education, and employment opportunities. The government ratified the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in 2006, enacted the Law on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in 2015, and is working to develop laws to protect the rights of persons with disabilities. However, there are still many Issues to be addressed, such as barrier-free schools, hospitals, and transportation, eradication of prejudice and discrimination against people with disabilities, education that meets the needs of each person with disabilities, and human resource development to implement such education.

Activities

Operation of a vocational training school
for people with disabilities

Students enthusiastically work in a computer course class.

AAR Japan has been operating a vocational training school for the persons with disabilities since 2000. We offer training in sewing, hairdressing and beauty, and computers to people with physical disabilities due to childhood paralysis (polio) or accidents, etc. Since 2016, on average, more than 80% of our graduates have found employment. Since 2016, on average, more than 80% of our graduates have been employed. In 2018, we published Japan's first "Guide to Employing People with Disabilities" (PDF) for companies, together with local organizations working to promote corporate social responsibility (CSR). We are also a member of a government subcommittee that discusses employment policies for people with disabilities.

Inclusive education

AAR staff (left) interviewing children with disabilities and out-of-school children.

We are committed to inclusive education, where children with and without disabilities learn together while considering their individual characteristics and needs. To promote the schooling of children with disabilities, we are involved in activities such as building a system with local communities that support the education of children with disabilities, making school buildings barrier-free, training teachers, and promoting understanding of disabilities. We are also lobbying the government to promote inclusive education.

Support for "foster parents" of children
with disabilities

A child learns about daily habits and how to make a schedule using cards with illustrations.

In Myanmar, few facilities take care of people with disabilities, and children with intellectual disabilities and severe disabilities, in particular, live in a harsh environment. We are implementing the "Myanmar Children's Future (Tomorrow) Program" to provide rehabilitation and learning support for these children so that they can fulfill their potential.

Major Activities in Past

  • 2008 - 2010

    Emergency support for
    Cyclone Nargis

    We provided support to the cyclone victims, which killed approximately 150,000 people and affected 2.4 million people. We provided emergency relief supplies to around 90,000 people and support for the persons with disabilities and psychosocial care.

  • 2013 - 2016

    Landmine prevention

    In areas where landmine damage is common, but countermeasures have lagged behind, we conducted awareness-raising activities such as producing educational materials on how to protect oneself from landmine damage.

  • 2017 - 2020

    Improving the environment
    for people with disabilities

    We conducted activities to promote understanding of disabilities among local people, make schools and other public facilities barrier-free, and provide assistive devices to the persons with disabilities.